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Remote learning, your views and our next steps

We had 123 responses on our week 3  remote learning survey. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and your appreciation for the work teachers and other adults in school and at home are doing to help children to continue to learn at home. It was lovely to read such positive messages.


You told us that changes we made after the last survey have resulted in noticeable improvements:  including timetabling, organisation and the amount of work set.


In this survey you have asked us to think about:

  • use of Oak National Academy lessons;

    • we are using a 'blended learning approach'. This means some of our lessons use pre-recorded video lessons from Oak, while other sessions French, PE , music, phonics, Storytime are either live or pre-recorded by our teachers. We also use some of the BBC materials. The decision to use the Oak video lessons made available and suggested by the Department for Education was based on research and what makes the most difference to children's learning. Recent research from the Education Education Endowment Foundation and Ofsted highlight that live video lessons aren't always best. Giving and receiving structured feedback has more impact on children's learning.  Teacher's time is spent on delivering small group live structured feedback sessions daily. To move to live lessons means they would not be able to do this. We have asked teachers to think about how feedback sessions are delivered to make sure the children get the most from them.

  • reducing the amount of English work or giving more time to complete it;

    • we have asked teachers to think about how much English work, including writing is set and the time given to it. We know this work is taking children longer to compete at home than it would do in school. Over the next week you should see a slowing down of the English lessons. 

  • for pupils to have more time to see their friends as they miss the interaction;

    • we have asked teacher to schedule a reward assembly each week for the whole class (remote class) to get together, this is similar to what we do in school. This will give children the opportunity to see other children from their remote learning class.

  • more contact from teachers in school;

    • children have moved to new classes, some with a different, but known teacher from their year group. Teachers in school are teaching their new temporary class. We are mindful of workload for teachers and therefore have not asked teachers in school to make contact with the pupils at home.

  • some OneNote difficulties, for example uploading, working on the notebook page and differences in expectations for different year groups; 

    • class notebooks can be slow if your WiFi connection isn't stable;

    • teachers have taken the time to look at class notebooks from other year groups to see how other class notebooks are set up, this should lead to greater consistency;

    • inline with guidance from the Department for Education, children in key stage 2 (Years 3-6) are expected to complete more work online, whereas children in and early years (Nursery and Reception) and key stage 1 (years 1 and 2) should do more work away from the screen. This is why the the work is set up in a slightly different ways. For example children in Year 4 might be expected to write/type directly into the class notebook while a child in Year 2 may have sheets to download, complete away from the computer and then upload.

    • Longer term, we are looking at the other functions within Microsoft Teams to see how we can further improve the use of this.

  • spreading specialist lessons across the week or less work on these days;

    • to keep children in a routine, we have tried to keep our remote timetables as close to school timetable as possible. Children in school would usually complete French, music and PE in a morning or afternoon session. During this time teachers meet together to plan for the next week, this means they are not available for feedback sessions or to respond to any questions raised by children. We will keep grouping these session together, however we will reduce the amount of work that needs to be completed in other subjects on these days. 

  • more written feedback from teacher on work (some classes)

    • teachers have met in their year teams to talk about the amount of feedback they are giving and how;

    • teachers will show on the weekly timetable what work will be given written feedback and what work will be given verbal feedback;

    • where feedback from some teachers has been sparse, this will improve.


You should see some of the changes I have mentioned above  from today, others may take a little more time.


Emotional wellbeing

We also asked children about the strategies they use to manage their emotions while learning at home and how thier teachers help them to do this. Only a third of children told us that their teacher had helped them with this. Some children are using regular screen breaks and some are using the strategies we talk about in MindUP lessons.


This week teachers will record a MindUP brain break for your child to use when needed. Next week we will be taking some time to talk to the children about their mental health and wellbeing. Look out for my news article on this.  

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